Exciting meeting with my former writing tutor Maggie Hamand from https://www.writingcourses.org.uk/. Most professional and most productive writing classes I ever took.
Senta is going places!
… and appearing among such illustrious writers as A. S. Byatt, Anton Chekov and Jessica Valenti
This is actually a quote very dear to my poetic heart and I am very surprised that anyone would understand it/me, let alone quote it.
17. “It might help to remember that the writers of these poems were usually men who lived much more powerful and independent lives than the women they worshipped and that their power, the power of the poets, is the power to adore. The power to turn the woman into an object of worship. Into an object of beauty.”
Author: Senta Holland
The most beautiful reviews of Senta Holland’s ‘Out of the Shadows and into the Darkness’ came from Gel at bookishtemptations. https://bookishtemptations.com/2013/06/10/gel-reviews-out-of-the-shadows-and-into-the-darkness-by-senta-holland/
Gel now has her own illustration website where you can order your tailormade romantic and erotic images for books, websites etc.
I just loved mine. And it was such a surprise and delight to come across an artist like Gel, purely by chance (or was it some fiendishly clever research by my publicists’ assistant Lucy?)
Anyway here it is, check it out. http://www.temptingillustrations.com/
After a long absence (all to do with my upcoming erotic SciFi series!) I looked at my Amazon account of ‘Out of the Shadows’ again – and here’s the most beautiful review by Peter Colby that a girl could wish for.. This is someone who understands. (Of course, being Senta, I had to cry beautiful tears…)
“This is as different from 50 shades as could possibly be. It too has love and sex, but as the natural concomitant of the primary D/s connection between the two characters, Nai and Senta. It is told from the point of view of the submissive girl, Senta, and the book cuts between their meeting, romance and her previous experiences trying to find what it is she craves. She does not meet “her Nai” by chance, it was arranged on the internet through Alt.com. (the best known BDSM contact site).
Everything in the book sparkles with the ring of truth. This is a girl who has been there, and knows the agonies of feeling different as a child as well as the disappointments along the way of trying to pursue what at times seems a hopeless, even degrading search for the person who will fulfil you at your core.
Senta describes the psychology of being a submissive, the longing to be owned, the craving to fulfil her Dominant, and the acceptance that everything she truly is can only be, and is, expressed through her relationship to him.
As he takes her further into their life, with more and more painful and demanding “play” she jumps each ever higher hurdle with joy and delight, partly because she knows she is pleasing him but also because he is giving her, also, the thing she needs and craves. This is not her “letting him do it” it is her as a full partner in the act, glorying in it and knowing she is fulfilled by it.
Unlike 50 shades there is no question here of negotiation, other than her initial consent. Nai tells her what is to happen, or sometimes not. It is his decision and her role is to submit to that decision for as long as they stay in that relationship. Yes, she has a safe word but you know she would rather die than use it. She trusts “her Nai” to protect her and keep her safe. It is his duty and responsibility.
She is very good on the dream of a 24/7 lifestyle. What she and Nai have is a long romance in Bangkok where they meet and he is based. Like 50 shades Nai has enough money and freedom to allow him time but not to the fairy tale extravagance of Grey. The hope Senta carries of this being 24/7 runs through the book, with all the Real Life problems that go with the attempt to carry this to fruition. I will not spoil the book by telling you how that resolves.
At one point though she runs out of money and has to return to England, leaving Nai in Bangkok. This for her is akin to dying, a submissive can only be that if she has a Dominant, and the same is equally true in reverse. There is one great line that sums up her situation;
“My body..was used to many orgasms and the furthest limits of control. And now it was standing in a queue at Marks and Spencer’s.”
From the utterly sublime to the utterly prosaic; I doubt you will see it better expressed.
Senta is very good on how difficult it is to find the person you are searching for. She details disastrous meetings from the internet along with many close but not right partners. She knows when she meets Nai that he really could be “the one” and as their relationship strengthens her in that belief she becomes more and more invested in him. She describes very well how although it is not hard to find a play partner it is rare to find the partner to whom you just fit. There is a sort of linear scale in what we call BDSM which encompasses many way stations. To find the partner who wants pretty well exactly what you want but in reverse may and usually will be a long search, with no certainty that person will ever be found.
It is the embodiment of the truth that it matters not that you sometimes fail, or fall. What matters in life, and what defines us, is whether you overcome that failure, get up and again and pursue your dreams.
You can read this book as a love story, which it is, or one girls’ fight to chase her dreams, which it also is, or just as a brilliant explanation of how a natural submissive thinks.
For whichever reason, if you get the chance please read it.”
Quote from my story: “Rejection, and the response to it, is at the core of our culture and our literature. It’s a very strong feeling, it has a dramatic dynamic, involving hope, desire, dreams, reaching out (and often, from the perspective of the rejected, up) to someone or something fervently desired. And then – it’s a long, steep fall down. Crashing and destroying those hopes, dreams, desires. Just like the man Catullus says.
And no, I don’t just want to leave the field to the guys.
Here’s another icon of Western culture: Emily Bronte.’
What is your response to the theme of rejection in Western culture and poetry?